Harbinger Increases Cablevision Stake, Seeks Meeting

Aug 22 2008 | 12:06pm ET

Activist hedge fund Harbinger Capital Management is upping the stakes in a potential battle with New York-area cable television provider Cablevision Systems.

Upping its stake in Cablevision, that is: Harbinger bought more than 7 million additional shares in the Bethpage, N.Y.-based company and now owns an 8.1% stake. The hedge fund had built up a 4.9% stake in Cablevision during the second quarter.

Harbinger said in a statement that is hopes to meet with Cablevision management “in the very near future.” Cablevision, for the first time in years, has been meeting with large investors, as well as its first quarterly dividend. The company said it would consider a payout, share buybacks and spinning off some of its divisions, including Madison Square Garden, which owns basketball’s New York Knicks and hockey’s New York Rangers.

Cablevision, like earlier Harbinger target The New York Times Co., has a dual-share class structure, giving most voting rights to the controlling Dolan family. Harbinger struck a deal with the Times’ controlling Sulzberger family for board representation.

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